More Backstage Notes on WWE Draft

Here is some more inside information regarding the WWE Draft. In general, the company is pleased with the moves taken to freshen up the product and strengthen Smackdown – although some remain concerned about moving Rey Mysterio off that show. Smackdown has a substantial Hispanic demographic as well as attracting more young viewers than Raw, which tended to target males aged 12-49. Obviously both shows are now changing their fanbase. As far as the wrestlers are concerned…

Carlito is said to be in a much better position now that he is no longer on Raw.

Jeff Hardy was planned to feud with Chris Jericho and regain the Intercontinental Title, yet now there is little in particular planned for him. A feud with MVP was discussed but there is some reluctance to do it owing to the familiarity of MVP’s recent lengthy program with Matt Hardy.

Shelton Benjamin has also been suggested as a new opponent for Jeff Hardy. However, for whatever reason, Michael Hayes is not much of a fan of Benjamin’s work ethic and many were surprised he was moved to Smackdown.

Of all people, Deuce is getting some favourable reviews from the agents and is due to be given a push and a new look on Raw. There is still a question mark over him in singles competition but he is in a much better position than Domino, who is thought to not be far away from being wished well in his future endeavours.

Kofi Kingston and Ken Kennedy are more or less being left to their own devices, since the Intercontinental Title will get little attention from creative and Kennedy has been treading water for a long time now.

Trevor Murdoch was brought to Smackdown as Michael Hayes was a fan of his work. Dusty Rhodes had tried to get him moved to the show last year but it didn’t happen and Brian Gerwitz did nothing for him on Raw. Of course, Murdoch has since been released.

Harry Smith will probably get more opportunities to show what he can do as Hayes likes his work.

Finlay was moved to ECW specifically to fill the player-coach role that was once earmarked for Chris Benoit. Hornswoggle moved with him to not break up their act, yet there is recognition that he is not a good fit on ECW as most of his fans are young boys and the show is not geared towards them.

C.M. Punk has been criticised by Brian Gerwitz in creative meetings prior to his move to Raw. There are also a number of veterans on the show who do not like him, sensing that his refusal to drink alcohol means he has a bad attitude.

Matt Striker will probably be used as a manager for developmental talent that gets brought up to the main roster.

Credit: Wrestling Observer Newsletter, 07 July 2008 (subscribe here)

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